Home » Creativity » Supper surprise – limits create art.

Supper surprise – limits create art.

Sometimes random things create the best results. We are in a “rustic” cabin. There is no food here save what we brought. Even basics like milk, butter, and seasonings are absent. It means we have to make do with very little and get really creative if we want something palatable.
What was supposed to be the main part of the meal wasn’t. It paled in comparison to what was the side dish. We brought potatoes to cook. We had a bag of new potatoes at home, so I pulled out five large ones. It was definitely time to eat them. They were starting to grow eyes. We mixed in a can of beans from our kit, but it just wasn’t that interesting.
We brought our kit we take to Grandfather Mountain, but slightly modified. We didn’t know what was going to be provided here, so we had to pack a lot. It is really a mind bending experience trying to figure out what two people will need to survive for a couple of days. We can’t take the whole kitchen. What is enough, and what is too much? What is essential, and what can be used for several things?
Our kit has a can opener, a bottle opener, a pair of scissors, clips, reseal-able bags of various sizes, reusable plastic bowls and cutlery, ceramic mugs (good for hot foods as well as drinks). There is also jar of honey, a jar of cooking oil (does not need refrigeration and substitutes for butter in many cases). A can of beans, a can of corn. Triscuits. Tea bags. Instant coffee. A sauté pan, and a pan for boiling or steaming. A wooden spoon, a spatula, a teapot. A pencil sharpener and pencils.
It sounds like a lot. But it all is needed and all will be used. Miss one thing and life could get complicated. No matter what, we are guaranteed to be short something.
We discovered that the lighter I brought had just enough in it to light once. So much for the fireplace. Tomorrow we will have to buy another lighter. My husband has bought survival firestarters but of course they are all at home. We don’t need to have a fire to cook – the cabin has a nicer stove than we have at home. But having a fireplace was part of the selling point of this cabin.
But then again, having a restaurant was part of the selling point of this site. Too bad the restaurant is closed for the season. So now we have to feed ourselves the whole time. We could go out, but then again, we could do that at home. The point is to stay in as much as possible, and to make ourselves make do with what we have.
We went to the grocery store. It was a Food Land, just up the road. Turns out we paid dearly for the convenience. We’ll remember this for the future. Shop at home for the stuff that can travel, and shop local for the perishables. We didn’t have a menu either. We got what looked good.
The result of the experiment the first night was toasted whole-wheat hoagie rolls with melted Colby-Jack cheese, with avocado spread and crumbly salmon. It was fabulous. We never would have come up with this at home, where we had lots of choices.
Now, it turns out that food and art have a lot to do with each other. Limits are good.
I can only bring a very limited amount of beads when I travel. Because of the canvas bag I have, the most I could bring is six of the 18 bins I have. But even six is too much for a trip, so I take one and some essentials. This forces me to edit and limit, and see things in new ways. It forces me to not be so picky and to just create. It is kind of like the challenges on “Project Runway”. You have to make something amazing but you have only three of the six things you need. ”Make it work”, and sometimes they do.
Sometimes having too much choice means you don’t create or innovate. Sometimes it is best to strip away everything and start again from scratch, just so you learn what is really important.

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